This 1990 Alpina B10 Biturbo Is My Current Obsession

I have had dreams of driving an Alpina. Visions of triple-digit speeds across Germany in a decal-decked super-sedan. In these premonitions, the car looks a lot like this one. And I think I need to turn them into reality at some point.


Alpina has long been in the business of taking what BMW calls its final product and giving it a little... more. More aero, more engine, more wood, more wheels. You may remember the number they did on the Z8, or maybe their more recent work with the 6 and 7 Series which you could actually find on the American market.

In this case, the mad scientists at Alpina took your basic E34 535i (nope, not an M5), and used two Garrett T25 turbochargers to pull another 150 or so horsepower out of it through a five-speed manual transmission. Outside, decals and bigger splitters let everyone know that you didn’t have a normal 5er.

With a price tag of around $100,000 new, it wasn’t going to win over masses of buyers, especially when the M5 undercut it by about $40k. Only a few more than 500 B10 Biturbos were built and this one is unit number 53.


If you’re wishing you managed to snag one of those original 500 cars, you can bid on this one, 81,000 kilometers on the odometer, at BringATrailer here with no reserve. I’m interested to see how it does this time around after it went for $77,000 back in 2016. Maybe I’ll catch it on its third time around. I know the hallucinations won’t let up until I do.

Max Finkel is a Weekend Contributor at Jalopnik.


Shane Morris

I love the way an Alpina looks, and the provenance of the brand is undeniable.

HOWEVER. At $77K, we still need to have a conversation about this being a mid 90s 5-Series. This is a cool car, but even assuming you started with a mint E34 535i, and decided to bolt on a supercharger, some go-fast stuff, a bit of suspension gear, etc... you might only touch $25,000 in total spent when you were done. (Heck, if you’re so inclined, you can also homebrew a turbo kit. You may be in it for $10,000, but if that’s what you want, go for it.)

The history and name of the car is really cool, but I feel like I'd be just as happy in a 5-Series with some tasteful BBS wheels, a few upgrades, and a nice interior restoration. Paying upwards of $80K for... once again, it's an E34, just seems silly. (The same goes for the M5 of the same vintage. I get it. They're cool cars, but damn y'all. What is the badge really worth?)